Skip to main content

Full text of "Ancient Indian Culture In Afghanistan"

See other formats


GREATER INDIA SOCIETY 
BULLETIN No. 5. 




IT 

Dr UTEM)RA NATH GlIOdllAL M A. rh.D. 




GREATER INDIA SOCIETY 



BULLETIN No. 5. 



h n° \i. 



ANCIENT INDIAN CULTURE IN 
AFGHANISTAN 




* v 



ir 



Or. UPENDRA NATH GH03IIAL. MJL Pli.D. 



CALCUTTA: 

192a 



PREFACE. 



A preceding volume of this series opened with the 
following notable quotation front u recent work of the 
greatest of living French ori*nitallsts, Prof. Syhain I/vi. : 
“In tho groat movement of exchange which constitutes from 
time immemorial the organic life of the whole of mankind, 
India bn* largely given as she has largely rocoi rod.’ ’ No 
words could inoro truly describe the results of the contart 
between India and Afghanistan during the centuries 
preceding the Muhammadan coqqncst when Indian 
culture was still a living force instinct with tko 
spirit of agpvwsive vigour. Situated at the gateway 
of the Indian continent whence it commands all the main 
lines of its inland Communication with Western and 
Biwtnri Asia, Afghanistan lists been the channel through 
which haw llow.il the numerous cultural and other in- 
fluences that have shaped the history of India in the past. 
On the other hand the Indian influences, especially under 
the urge of the great movement for cultural expansion 
associated with Buddhism, have overflowed the western 
frontiers of India and tli>* signs of their triumph are 
writ large not only in the existing monuments of Afghani- 
stan. the *tUpu>. images, ciive-slirines, pillars and the like, 
but were abundantly illustrated in the prevailing forma of 
religion, language and social manners before they were 
engulfed by the advancing tide of Islam. Verily the 
history of Greater India would lw lacking in some of its 
important chapters, if the story of India's cultural contact 
with its western neighbour were left untold. 




( ii ) 



Tbe present monograph was undertaken at the request 
of my friend and colleague. Dr. Kali das Nag, to whom my 
best thanks are due. I have also to thank my friends 
Dr. Pruhodh Chandra Bagchi aud Dr. Bijan Itaj Ch&tterjec 
for facilities for the consultation of some important works 
on my subject. Finally I must not omit to express my 
profound appreciation of the interest taken in the progress 
of the Greater India Society by its Honoraiy President, Mr. 
Jadunath Sarkar, Vice-Chancellor, Calcutta University. 

U. N. GnosHAL. 




APPENDIX 

On the History of Archaeological Exploration* 
in Afghanistan 



The history of explorations of antiquities in Afghani- 
stan mar fittingly commence with the mention of the 
ill-fated journey of tiro Englishmen from India to the 
country of Turkestan in the first quarter of the 19th 
century. William Moorcroft, a veterinary surgeon who 
held the post of Superintendent of the East India Com- 
pany's military stud, was filled with the idea of importing 
tho Turkoman breed of horses for improving the Company’# 
remounts and of opening a profitable trade between 
British India and Turkestan. Wjth a young companion 
George Trebeok, the son of an English solicitor practising 
in Calcutta, he Gtarted on his perilous journey in 1819, 
and after encountering many difficulties and disappoint- 
ments which might will hare shaken a less renolufe heart 
he at length reached Bokhnrn by way of 1,6 and Kahul. 
On their way back both the trarellers wen- seized with 
on attack of fever to which they eventually succumbed 
in 1825. Their solitary grarea at and near Balkt were 
the mournful memorials of this unfortunate and ill- 
advised adventure. The account of their travels was made 
accessible to the public some time afterwards in 1831 by 
the labours of the distinguished Orientalist II. H. Wilson. 
Prom it we learn how tlioy were the first Europeans to 
explore the stupas of Afghanistan and visit tho colossi at 
Bamiyan. But meanwhile a young British officer. 
Lieutenant Alexander Burnes, had been tempted, by 
the prospect of visiting the places conquered 

by Alexander and of exploring the Oxus, to 

undertake a journey across the Punjab and thence 
through Peshawar to Bokhara. Accompanied by a medical 




officer Dr. James Gerard he successfully accomplished 
his mission in 1832 ; it is interesting to note that a young 
Hindu, Mohan Lnl “of Cashmere family" attended the 
mission of Bumes as his Persian Mumhi. In giving an 
account of his journey Buraes recorded notices of the 
“topes" the “caves in rocks” and the “towers" in. the 
Jelalahad and Kabul regions and above all he described the 
“Buts of Bamiyan" which he gravely remarked “existed 
before the time of Muhammad and when the country was 
possessed by Kafirs under the dominion of Zoh&k whose 
reign was antecedent to Christianity”. Almost imme- 
diately after this time another intrepid traveller entered 
the Afghan country and began that systematic exploration 
of ita antiquities which was destined to throw the work 
of his predecessors into the shade. This was Charles 
Masson, an American, oue of whose chief incentives to 
archaeological research in that dangerous country was his 
desire to identify the site of Alexandria under the 
Caucasus, one of the colonies founded by the mighty 
Macedonian. The qualities displayed hj Masson in the 
course of his search for antiquities — unbounded capacity 
for physical endurance, keenness of observation and skill 
in collecting all interesting information — have deservedly 
won for him the unstinted admiration of the greatest living 
authority on the art of Gandhftra school* During his stay 
in Afghanistan from 1834 to 1837. this daring explorer 
was able to open numbers of rltipas in the Jelalabad and 
Kabul regions and was rewarded with the discovery of 
wonderful relic caskets, coins and other antiquities, what 
was of more immediate importance, he acquired at the 
cost of the East India Company a hoard of over 30,000 
coins, Greek, Scythian, llindu.Sassanide and Muhammadan, 
which were mostly obtained from an ancient site called 
Begram about 25 miles to the north-east of Kabul. The 
results of his explorations were given out to the world in 



• Rre Fovditr, K<\te* *u r Vl l mtr mt do Bitten Tsang 
en Afghanistan, pf>. 206-250 Elwks Asvitiqxus L 





the form of three successive Memoirs contributed to the 
Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal (1835 and 1830) 
and were afterwards published by H. H. Wilson in the 
Ariaua Antiqua (London, 1841) along with a Memoir from 
Masson’s pen. The numismatic discoveries of Masson at 
once roused wide-spread interest, and they formed the 
subject of some learned contributions to the Asiatic 
Society’s Journal from the pen of the illustrious James 
Prinsep. Interest in the Baetriau and Indo-Ureok coins 
was reused on the Continent at the same time by the 
arrival of Dr.lionigberger who had formerly boon a medical 
officer in the servieo of Maharaja Kanjit Singh and hnd 
carried out some minor excavations in the Jclulabad region. 
Shortly after this time there breku out the catastrophe 
of the First Afghan War which led, by a natural sequel, 
to Afghanistan becoming a forbidden land for European 
visitors. Even during the critical years of the war, how- 
ever, it was possible for an English officer. Lieutenant \ in- 
cent Eyre, who was a prisoner in the hands of the Afghans, 
to cxaiaino the Bnnuyan Caves. His account, brief and 
imperfect ns it wns, appeared subsequently in a work which 
he wrote under the title The Military Operation* at 
Kabul with a Journal of imprisonment in Afghani flan. 
Not long afterwards a daring French officer, J. P. Ferrier, 
desirous of seeking his fortune at the court of Lahore, 
performed an adventurous journey in disguise from Bagdad 
overland to Lahore, in the coureo of which he visited 
certain Buddhist rock-cut caves at a place called Singlak. 
It was however not till the outbreak of the next Afghan 
War (1878-80) that it became possible for an English 
war correspondent Mr. William Simpson, to examine the 
caves and *(Qpa* at Jelalabad, of which he wrote some 
accounts illustrated with sketches in the Journal of the 
Kuyal Asiatic Society (1882) and other papers. A fresh 
opportunity fox exploration came with the appointment of 
tie liusso-Afghan Boundary Delimitation Commission by 
the Government of Lord Dufferin in 1885. The officers 
attached to this commission, especially Captain the Hon. 





Maitland, prepared full and 
Handrail Caves which were after* 
illustrative sketches in the Journal 
of the floral Asiatic Society (1866). At this point the 
exploration of antiquities practically came to a standstill 
so much so that the illustrious author of the Greco- 
Ruddhtst art of Gnndhlra, when bringing out t ho first 
volume of his work, in 11H)5, thonght that we should have 
to wait for a now campaign to increase the sources of our 
knowledge of the subject (1). But a new era fraught with 
the richest promises for the future of archaeological 
research in Afghanistan opened in 1022 when the Afghan 
Government under the enlightened direction of its present 
ruler signed a convention with M. Foucber. by which France 
was granted the privilege of carrying out for 30 years tho 
work of archaeological excavation throughout the kingdom. 
The result of this momentous step has more than justified 
itself even within the short interval of tune that has since 
elapsed. Within the last few years Afghanistan has 
been visited by a number of French scholars M. and Mine. 
Godard, Hackin, Jouveaux Duhreuil and above all Fouchar, 
the head of the Freucli archaeological delegation, and their 
journeys have already helped to light up many an 
obscure corner in the field. A series of Hemoira of the 
French delegation has bren projected, of which the accond 
volume containing a fascinating account of tho Buddhist 
antiquities of Bamivan with 6iunptuous illustrations has 
appeared very recently. Tho prospect is most promising, 
and it may confidently be predicted that ere long 
Afghanistan will he made to yield up the antiquarian 
treasures which she ha* jealously guarded within her 
bosom foT so manv centuries. 



1. Sc* Voucher, L'Ari Grtco-botidtWiiquf du GonJhara I p. 7. 






ANCIENT INDIAN CULTURE IN AFGHANISTAN 



Th* 1 kingdom nf Afghanistan, constituted a* at pre- 
aent, comprises the north-eastern block of the great 
tableland that separates the valley of the Indus from thp 
valley* of the Euphrates and the Tigris. Its most Cons- 
picuous physical feature is tlie mighty mountain-chain 
which commencing at its noithcrn ami eastern edge spreads 
forth f.m-like for a considerable distance to the south and 
the west, presenting a kind of natural rampart on those 
side*, ft is watered by three historic rivets, the Kabul 
in the '-nst, the Ilelinuod in tlui south-west mid the Oxus 
in the north. Its climate, though subject to singular 
vicissitudes, is remarkably dry and salubrious. Inters- 
persed with mountains and deserts it boasts of rich and 
valleys where are grown fruits and cfTenls in such 
indsinco ns to form an important article of export to 
i* ghbouriog lands. Nor luis nature denied to this 
•oared region its stock of mineral wealth which has as 
. n only imperfectly developed bv the enterprise of 
its inhabitants. 

tl The geographical situation of the country, lying as it 
docs between two great nones of civilisation, the Indian 
and the West Asiatic, and athwart the natural outlet of 
the hive nf nomadic hordes inhabiting the steppes of 
Centra) Asia, has fixed for ages the role which it was 
destined to play on the stage of history. It has been from 



AXCIKN7 IJfDUN C't't.TVHE IX AFOHAXKTAX 



*> 



the earliest times the meeting-place of races, languages 
and cultures confronting each other often in armed conflict 
ami sometimes in peaceful intercourse. At the dawn of 
history it was divided between the Vedic-speaking Indo- 
Aryan-i and thoir Iranian kinsmen. In the following 
centuries it has hwn swept in turn by Persian, Hellene, 
Indian, Scythian, Parthian, Ilun and Turk, not to speak 
of the motley crowd of peoples, Turk, Afghan and Moghul 
who successively ruled the country under the banner of 
Islam in subsequent times. One consequence of this extra- 
ordinary diversity of ethnic and cultural conditions has 
been that the country, which besides suffers from a 
complete lack of geogruphicul unity, hat foiled till within 
tlm last century and a half to develop a united and inde- 
pendent political existence. From tin expansion of tlm 
Achaeineuid rule over ll.ilkh nnd the Kabul valley under 
Cyrus (558*530 B. C.) to the accession of the founder of 
the Durrani dynasty in 1747 A. D, it has been the lot of 
Afghanistan often to he yoked to the great empires either 
of the east or the west or else shared between both (1). 

We have stated above that Afghanistan has been 

III A vivid picture uf the iniioenw variety d races inhabiting 
Afghanistan at tho done of tbo sixteenth century fe drawn Ijr Alrnl 
Fizl. Accenting to his statement (Aui-i-Akbori Jarett'* tr.. VoL II 
l>. 4'i) tho Kabul province alone kutsted of dereo language* **|ciken 
by a* many distinct ualluialities. Even ut th? present time at»out 
twenty di.Htinct language* are: spoken in tho territory ruled by tho 
king of Afghanistan (Mafgfcmtierna, Ittporl, p. 6). Haw strong tho 
traditional connection of the Afghan ro.tntry with India was thought 
fo be at the end of the 16th ceotiry will best appear from an nnneut 
maxim quoted by Abui Fnzl (lhid p. 404J to the effect that Kabul 
and Kandaiiar were the twin gates of Hindustan. 





AX11EXT INMAX CLLTCHK DC AFGHANISTAN H 

ordained by a natural destiny to fie the meeting-place of 
races and culture It is now necessary to trace tho 
channels along which this stream of contact has flowed 
for centuries. Nature has marked out two main mules 
stretching right across the country which have been from 
time immemorial the means of communication between 
India and the countries of "Western Asia. In the tract 
just north of the head of the Kabul river a single, though 
lofty, mountain-ridge, that of the Hindu Kush, flanked 
by low ground on either side, is all that separates the 
valley of the Oxuh from that of the Indus. This route 
after crossing the Indus ut or near its junction with the 
Kabul river, ascends the basin of the latter, and after 
piercing the Hindu Kush, debouches upon the plain of 
Bactria whence it leads to Persia and tire Far-West. The 
Other route after issuing from tho lower Indus plain and 
nseending n mountainous country leads by an eas) way 
arrow the open plntmufrom Kamlalmr to Herat and thence 
along the southern slopes of Mount Elburz to the lands of 
"Western Asia. Of these two routes the first has played 
by far the more important part iu linking up India with 
its neighbouring countries. It has boeu trod not ouly by 
most of the mighty invaders of India like Darias, the grant 
Alexander, Seleucus aud the Kushau king Kudphisc* I, 
but also by pious pilgrims like the illustrious Ilmen 
Tsang. Its course is marked by n succession of cities 
which have played a historic part in ancient times such 
ns Taksnsila, NagaraliRra, KnpisS. Baiuiyan anil Balkh. 
After the memorable journey of the ambassador Chnng- 
kicn to the lauds of the Yuch-cbi (c.120 B. C.) which lire! 




1 



AXCIEN1 IKDUN CCLTCHE IK ATOII.VKMTAN 



opened to tho Chinese the knowledge of the western 
countries, und specially after the introduction of Buddhism 
into China in the first century A. D., the route across the 
Hindu Kush became one of the main highways of com- 
munication between India and the great civilised State 
of Eastern Asm. Of the two main highways leading 
from China to the west the northern was linked up 
with the Hindu Kush route by way uf the lake lssvk Kul. 
Samarkand, Sogdiana and across the Oxus, while tlie 
southern one was connected with it through Khotan, 
Yarkand and across the Pamirs. (1) 

The Phe-Achaemesie Pehiod 

Without attempting to trace hack to their source in tin* 
dim ages of antiquity the many and undoubted links 
binding together the two closely related branches of tho 
Aryan family of races, the Indo- Aryan and the Iranian, 
it is possible to indicate their respective connections at 
the dawn of history with the country that nature had 
meant to lie their common meeting-ground, the region, that 

tlj Fur description* uf the aturc ruutr-s with jh roiuisu-yiu; iruijm, 
mo (\ II. 1. f. 28 ; Kouclwr, XoU*. pj>. 2G3, 2CT find 278 ; II>hI. 
Anrient (htffnrf of Ganriham : Vincent Smiths Appendix to 
Waftten* Vim rjmvoH/. VuL II. While cm Huh subject, we nuy 
mt^filiocj an nlteniBtive ruuie leading throiyrh the extreme noiih- 
ekKtern fringe uf tlic lnmiun plateau from North -Western India to 
China. It ran Uiruiifli ihe ancient Oandliara und Udyim and after 
pieniitg the hilly country to th* north of the l&diu crossed tho 
watcndicd becwim the upper valleys of the Iudu* and Um r >xu*. 
and theaee with * .thorp uv-t wanl bend connected with the irmii 
Htiu 'hero highway threnurfc Khotan to China. See Sir AutpI Stein 1 ** 
map at the end of hr Itrporl of the TbrtJ .Journey of Erpiotuthn in 
Central Asia. 





ASCTENT ESDIAS CTLTCnr IX AFOJTAXISTAX 



r> 



is, which corresponds to the modern Afghanistan and 
Baluchistan. The Big- Veda, the earliest literary monu- 
ment of the Iiulo-Aryans, shows that they were already 
acqnaintid with the territory now represented by Eastern 
Afghanistan and Northern Baluchistan. For it mentions 
the rivers KuhliR (with its trihutary the SuviLstu), the 
Kt mu u and the Gomati, which have been identified respec- 
tively with the Kabul, the Swat, tie Kurrum and the 
Oornal rivets of modern times (1). We have also evidence 
of the contact between hid©- Aryans of the Indus ralfcy 
and the tribes farther west in thp celebrated though 
obscure story ’.of the buttle of the ten kings (disarfijhu) 
mentioning how ten allied tribes fought, unsuccessfully 
against SudBa, king of the Bharatas. Of these tribes the 
Alinas are generally supposed to have occupied the north- 
east of modern Kntiiistnn while the BhalSnases anil the 
1‘akthas have been connected respectively with the region 
of the Bolan pass and the ethnic name of Pnkhthun 
applied by the modem Afghans to themselves. Evidence 
of another kind of contact between the Indo- Aryans of the 
interior and the North-Western frontier is furnished by the 
reference in a Big- Veda hymn to the high quality of the 
wool of GandhBr&Thc records of the connection of the Irani- 
ans with these regions, though later in date by many centu- 
ries, are ampler and fuller. The Avesta,which many scholars 
hold to belong as a whole to a date preceding the rise of 



til The Vedic Ssnuroil was formerly identified oo rtymologhnl 
grounds with the Avestaa llaiahvoitl (the ilasskal Anslwsial, Ixit 
tlio rnwnt tendency of Vedic scholar* is to rcslm-t its dcriiccnlkut 
to thctwcivd river of that name in Enrnknbt. 





15 



AXOTRST INUUX CCUTltE IN AFOIUXJBTAJt 



the Achaemenid*, has been held to contain allusions to the 
Hindu Kush and the land of tho seven rivers. More 
definite references have been found in it to the countries 
called Baktriane, Areia, Arachosia and Drangiann by the 
classical writers, corresponding to the modern Balkh, 
Herat, Kandahar and Seistan regions (1). It would thus 
appear that tho Iranians at the time of their first emer- 
gence on the stage of history had already acquired a firm 
grip over the countr.es on the Indian borderland which 
they were destined to rule for centuries. 

The most important change that occurred among the Indo- 
Aryuns iu the period immediately following the Rig- Veda 
was tho fixation of the centre of Indo-Aryan culture in the 
tract between tho sacred Saras vati and Dp$ndvatL It 
was there that took place those complex developments of 
the sacrificial ritual that gave this age its characteristic 
stump. When the main stream of Yedic culture was thus 
diverted eastwards, the regions of the North-West and 
specially those beyond the frontier could not but sink in 
the general estimation of the Indo-Aryans. To the natural 
repulsion of a settled mid civilised people for rude pastoral 
folk was added the spirit of exclusiveness derived from the 
new sentiment of ritualistic purity and rigid adherence to 
religious routine. We already catch an echo of this spirit 
of antipathy in a hymn of the Athsrva Veda (V. 22) 
where fever is invited to go over to the Gnndhffria, the 
MnjnvautH, the Angcs and the Mugudhas who represent 



fli For reference! tho artktebjr I*rot A. V. WiUka* Jw'lana. 
n * IWnan Dommimu in Northern Indta down to tht tint of 
Altxnntirr'i hvatwm Ch. XIV). 




ANCIENT INDIAN C0XTCRK IN AFIIIIANISTAN 



7 



no doubt from the poet’s point of view the peoples living 
tm the extreme westerly os well as easterly fringe of Vedic 
civilisation. In the well-known contrast drawn in the 
Aitareya BiUhmaga (Vlli.l l) between tho kings called 
self-rulers (svarlt) of the Nicy as and the A pi evas in tli« 
western quarter and the rulers of other quarters known 
severally as overlord (sararSt), paramount ruler (bhojn), 
sovereign (viritt) and king (rltjuii), may bo detected tho 
priestly author ’s sense of the difference that separated the 
loosely organised states of the north-western peoples und 
the more firmly kuit monarchies of various grades in tho 
interior. A text of Yaska s Nirukta IL2.ii which is repeat- 
ed practically verbatim in Patafijali’fi MahabhliKya (1.1.1) 
mentions an instance of dialectic diiTercn<'« between the 
Kumbojas and the Ary as. This .shows that at the date 
of the tirst-nnuird work (c. 6UO B.C.) and afterwards the 
Kauibojas who spoke the same language as the Indo- 
Aryans were not. regarded as belonging to the same stock. 
Mention may be made, finally, of the ban imposed by tho 
Brahmanical ritualistic works like Apastaniba SrautaaOtru 
(XXII. 6. 18)and BaudluSyana SSrautasQtra (XXII. 13 or 14) 
against visiting the lands of the Gaudharis, the Plraska- 
ras, the Kalingas. the Sauviras and others. 

Tub Ach aeuf.s id Conquest 

A now chapter opened in the history of the countries 
on the Indian North-Western frontier and further beyond 
with the eastward expansion of the empire of the Achaemc- 
nids. for the first time the outlying Iranian tribes lying 
on the fringe of Iranian civilisation alobg with their Indian 




H 



AXL’IEVT IXDUX LTLTt’HK IV APOH.VN'ISTAN 



neighbour* were united under a mighty Iranian empire 
stretching far away to the shores of the western sen. Tlio 
conquest* achieved by Cyrus (c.558-530 I3.C.) and the 
greatest, of his successors Darius the son of Hvstaspes (cJ»2'2- 
4.% B.C.) resulted iu the addition of Bactria, GandhUrn.and 
“Iudio" (generally identified with the Indus valley extend- 
ing from Kalabugh to tlio oca) to the Ackaemenid umpire. 
The dominions won by the sword of the Persian were 
consolidated by the genius of Darius into a well-knit 
imperial system based on the division into satrapies and 
the levy of fixed tribute. By virtue of this system the 
conquerors were able to turn to their full advantage the 
material resources of India as well as the huge reserves 
of her man-power. An extraordinarily heavy tribute 
amounting to one-third of the bullion revenue of the 
Asiatic provinces was imposed upon "India” which 
constituted the richest and the must populous province of 
tlio Persian empire. Indian troops, loth cavalry and 
infantry, were counted in the army of many nations which 
Xerxes led against Greece — the first and the only instance 
of an Indian expeditionary force sent to Europe on a large 
scale in ancient times. Indians fought shoulder to 
shoulder with Bnetrians and Sogdiau* in the battle which 
the last representative of the House of Acliacincues fought 
against the Maccdouiau invader in 830 B. C. Fur the 
ivst, the Persian system of administration left some tram 
of its influence upon the Indian borderland down to much 
later times. Examples of this kind are the Klinrcsthl 
script which remained in vogue iu North-Western India 
down at least to the fifth century A. D. imd was derived 




AXC1K-VI 1X1) LAX CULTTBE IX A Hi II A S' 1ST* X 



n 



from the Aramaic alphabet officially used by the 
Achacmcaids in their provinces, the titles of Kmtrapa and 
Mahokfafrapa derived from the Old Persian A'ftitrap&van, 
a few loan-words connected with writing like dipt and 
ftipiata of Asoka's Shuhbazgnrhi inscription, and a 
standanl of roinage based on the unit of the Persian xiglm. 

Let us try to pick up in the present place tho traces 
of ludiau culture that may he discovered in the eastern- 
most provinces of the empire of the Achaemonids. Of the 
satrapies of Darius bordering immediately upon the Indian 
frontier 6a(n)dSra i.e. (iandhlira, was, as we have seen, 
well-known to the In do- Ary an* from the time of tho 
Rig- Veda. An early historical tradition which goes hack 
to a date preceding the rise of Buddhism mentions the 
Gandhllras and the Kamhojas in a stock list nf sixteen 
great States or MahUjanapodaa. A Guild hit ra village 
produced tltf greatest of Sanskrit grammarians whoso 
date is usually assigned to 850 RC. A number of scenes 
in the Buddhist -littnkas are laid in the Ouudh.tra kingdom. 
The great city of TaksasilB Ls especially celebrated in 
these stories as an important centre to winch students 
crowded from the distant parts of India to complete their 
education. An early reference to the fame of Taksasihi 
is found in the Pali Vinaya Pitaka which tells 
the story of Jiraka who proceeded from M a gad ha 
to learn medicine from a ‘'world-renowned physician” 
of Tok^asilX and afterwards rose to lie the physician 
of king AjHtasatrn and the Buddhist fraternity. 

The land' of Gandliflra, however, was. after all, the 
threshold for entry into India from the North-West The 




10 



ASCITNT ISTHAJC CTLTTRE IN ATOHAIOHTAN 



ovidcm-e of cultural or other contact of the lands further 
afield with the centres of Indian civilisation in the interior, 
i\ on the other hand, remarkably ncantr. Apart from 
flnndhsra the Persian satrapies immediately bordering on 
the Indian frontier comprised Thatagu with which were 
associated the Dadikai and the Aparvtai, Saka with which 
were connected tho Kaspioi, nnd Maka. Of these names 
tko Dadilmi are generally identified with the L>ardn who 
are well-known to the Mahablittrata and other Sanskrit 
works under the name of Paradas. The title Kaspioi 
has been emended by Dr. F. TV. Thomas into Kapisai. 
Kltpisi is certainly known tn PHijini who derives therefrom 
(IV. 2. 00) the derivative kflplibgana meaning according 
to the Kflsiktl commentary the grapes and the grape- winu 
of KFIpisi. The latter is rIso referred to by Kautilya undrr 
the same designation in his Arthasastra (II. 25.). The 
Snkas are mentioned thus early in the PagapRtlin under 
the gana* Knnihoja and Sa^dika (Pjlij. Ill 1.35 and 
IV' 3.02) nnd doubtfully under the gaiias (iarpa and 
PrajfiS (Kit). IV 1.105 and V. 4.38). The territorial 
names Thatagu and Mnka are unknown to Indian litera- 
ture On the other hand the name Kainboja which has 
not been definitely traced in tho Persian inscriptions is 
known to I’Hgini (IV. 1.175) as the designation both of 
a kingdom and of a Ksntriya tribe. In the Arthasastra 
of Kautilya (XI) the tarhgha* consisting of the Ksatriva 
frenis etc. of the Kamboias, the Surfistras and the like 
are distinguished from another type nf xaihgha* like the 
Iicchavis and tin* Mallas who nsed the title of king. 
Evidently the Kambojas, while still ranking as Ksatriyas, 




AStTFNT INDIAN CTiTCBE W AFT.HA.VtSTAN 1 1 

had lost their monarchic constitution in the interval 
between Pflijini and the author of the AfthasSstrs. In tlio 
time of Asoka the Kambojas along with the Oiandhanw 
and Yonns were certainly regarded as Iwrder peoples 
included within the Mnurya sphere of influence. (6) 

The EifEDmos or Alexander of Mackuos. 

It is not ncwsaurr to describe here at any length the 
marvellous campaign of Alexander in the most easterly 
provinces of the Achaemenid empire which followed 
closely upon his crushing victory over the ill-fated 
Darias III nt the memorable field of Arbcla. Suffice it 
to soy that the victor secured his hold over his 
now conquests by his continuance of the Persian 
system of satrapies and his introduction of the Hellenic 
system of colonisation. Among the more prominent of 
such colonies may be mentioned. Alexandria under 
the Caucasus (represented by the modern Chnriknr 
to the north of Kabul) and Nicaea (situated some- 
where between Chariknr and the Kabul river). Tim 
narratives of Alexander’s campaign written by later 
authors on the basis of reports of his officers throw a 
welcome light upon tho condition of Indian culture in the 
highlands beyond the Indus at this time. From them we 
learn about the existence of an Indian chief calk'd Sisy- 
kotlos (Sasigupta) who was perhaps ruler of a small 
principality in the flinduknsh and of Indian tribes called 

(6) For refei*n<*« lo iL^ BaliUktH (or Bah!!*! in th«? Indian 
litmturo d tius period. see Pfijj V. 3 117 and Ka!j a>diu'.-« Varllika 
IC I tod, IV. SJ9. 




12 



AXC1HN7 DCDlAy CTLTCBE IS AI'G PAKISTAN 



Aaposioi and Assakenoi (Assakas) who occupied the 
rough and inhospitable hilly country wateml by the rivers 
Kuimr, I^nnjkora and Swat uf our own times. The Greek 
records inform us at the same time of a number of Indian 
place-names belonging to the tract of country west of the 
Indus. Such are the rivers Souastos and Gimrains 
identified respectively with the Suv&stu and the Gauri, 
and the town Peukelaotis which Is a Greek transliteration 
of the l*rakrit form of the Sanskrit Pusknrfivati. The 
continued existence of Indian place-names in this region 
is attested for the second century after Christ by the 
geographer Ptolemy who mentions the district of Souastena 
below the sources of the Souostos and that of Guryaia below 
the Lnmbatai. Both the Suvastu and the Gauri, it may lie 
mentioned, occur in juxtaposition in a long List of river- 
names in the MahabhSrata (VI 9.333). 

A Center v nr llixnc Imperialism 

The premature death of Alexander sonnded the death- 
knell of Macedonian rule in the Punjab and Sind which 
were annexed by Chandragupta Maurra to his newly 
founded empire. The subsequent attempt of Seleucns the 
lord of Western Asia lo emulate the exploits of the great 
Macedonian ended only in his surrender of the provinces 
of Paropanisadai, Areia and Arachosia to his Indian rival. 
From this political contact of the highlands beyond the 
Indus with a great Hindu Pinpire of the interior there 
resulted a substantial acession of Indian cultural 
influences into the country. The city of TaksasliS which 
occupied a most important strategic position on the high- 




ASOlENt IXOtAX CtrLtfJUJ IS AMBiSUfiX 13 

way from North-Western ludia to tin? western limits 
was selected by tHo Maury as as the head-quarters of one 
of their viceroyalties which extended nu doubt to the 
frontier of the Hindu Kush. When Anoka in the thirteenth 
y«V of this coronation appointed his new officers called 
Dharma-rnahHmntrus who Mid not exist for a long time 
previously,” ho sent them among other places to the 
territories of the Yavaiuu, the Kumbujus and tliu 
(iandhams in the upper valley of the Indus and its 
western tributaries. The result of this missionary zeal 
was summed up by himself when lie claimed to have 
achieved the conquest through Dhnrrna not only in the 
adjoining independent states, but "likewise here also in the 
king’s dominions among the Yavanax, ami Kambqjas" 
and the rest The evidence of the Ceylonese chronicles 
which supplements that of the Asokan inscriptions shows 
that the thera Majjhantika arrived with n band of monks 
to preach Buddhism in Kashmir and (Jnmlhuru which 
thenceforth, according to the pious opitinisin of the chro- 
nicler. shone with yellow robes and prized above all “the 
three things.” Whether the missionary efforts of the great 
Maurya and the worthy members of the Saragha were fur- 
ther extended to the line of the Hindu Kush, and if so, with 
what success, it is impossible to say. for we have only the 
uncorroborated testimony of lliucn Tsang in the seventh 
century AD. to the effect that Asoka built stupas at Kupist 

The Bole or the Bactklam axe toe Ixeo-(»beek Knroa 

The removal of the strong arm of Asoka was tho 
signal for disintegration of the mighty empire of the 




14 



Axcinvp rsniAS cCucie ix afjiukktax 



Mauryns. While tl»e descendants of the great Maurya, 
as is genorally supposed, divided between themselves tlte 
provinces of northern India, the provinces on the North- 
Western frontier appear to hove boon torn from their 
grasp not long afterwards. By 206 B. C. when hardly a 
quarter of a century h;ul elapsed from the death of Asoka 
the tract to the south of the Hindu Kush was in possession 
of Sophagasenas (Subliagascua) ta kiug of the Indians”, who 
followed the traditional jxilicy of the Mauryas by con- 
cluding a treaty with the court of .Syria which was 
renewed iu the year above-mentioned. The weakening of 
the military defences on the North-western frontier let 
loose, as it has often done since, n swarm of invaders on 
the rich plains of northern India. Between the years 200 
and 190 B. C. Euthydemos, the Greek king of Bnctrin, 
and his more famous son Demetrioa styled “king of the 
Indians” conquered the Kabul valley along with Anwhosia 
and the Punjab. Not long afterwards n rival called 
Kukri tides obtained possession not only of Bactrin but also 
of KSpisi and GandhUra. From that time till the extinc- 
tion of Greek dominion in this region these two rival 
houses divided between themselves the rule of the tract 
of country extending from the Oxus to the Eastern 
Panjab. 

Let us try to discover the traces, if any, of Indian 
cultural influences in the countries ruled by the 
Boctrian and Indo-Giwk kings during the period of their 
sovereignty. The numismatic evidence which is practi- 
cally the only available source for the history of these 
kings shows the continuance of Indian culture aa far north 




AXCONf IfTDIAJt Ot'LTL’HH IS AVMH.VNIST.VN 15 

ns the Hindu Kush. It is indit'd significant that while 
the early kings of Bnvtria issued coins of a purely Greek 
type, their sum-saurs fruiu the time <»f lUnu-trius on want* 
found it necessary frequently to issue bilingual ty pcs uf 
coins which Iteur the Greek legend ou the obverse and its 
translation in the Indian Prakrit and the Kbarosthl script 
on the reverse. Two of the ludo-Grwk kings Pautuleori 
and Agathnklui issued coins of the distinctive ludiuu 
square shape and bearing the Prakrit legend in the equally 
distinctive Indian BrtUnni character: it. is worthy of note 
that the rule of these kings lias been judg'd fnuu the 
firovt'iuiHcc of their coins to Imvn extended over Paropeni- 
saclui and Aroehositt. A fyjw of copper coins waned by 
Kukrafidis which bear on tin- obverse the legend Ha*ilcn* 
Mcgnlou Eukmtvfou in the Greek script has on the 
reverse tile legend turuige vtiganulcratii in the Kharosthi 
script This shows that the city of Kapisil, famous both ill 
the preceding and ill subsequent times, was a place of 
Prakrit speech at this time. 

Tub Klm.e or tof. Lsoo-ScmuAxs axd 

THK IxHO-pABTHlAXS 

It was about the year 135 iu\ that the Suk&s, driven 
from their homes ou the northern bank of the (bras by 
pressure of the Yueh-chi, overran the Greek kingdom of 
Bactria. Expellul from their new settlements by their 
relentless pursuers they flung themselves upon the 
Empire of Partliia, and it was not till the reign of the 
great Parthian sovereign Mitliridatcs II (123-88 ac.) 
that they were finally worsted in the struggle. Thus by 
a fortunate accident the Greek kingdoms of the upper 




10 



ASCI EXT tXDIAS OULTtTEE IV AF »H WKTAV 



Kabul valley obtained a now lease of life extending over 
almost a century. The first Indo-Seythinr. king known 
to history is the ‘kiug of kings' Maow (Moga) who con- 
quered the famous cities of Fusknnlvafl and TaksnsIlU 
fnmi Greek princes and thus drove a wedge between the 
Greek kingiloms of the upper Kill ul valley and those of 
the eastern Punjab. Shortly after this tint* the dynasty 
of tlic Parthian Vonones came into possession of the 
provinces of Arachosia (Kandahar) mil Drangiana 
(Seistan). Prom the Scythian and the Parthian kings 
tlie sceptre of north-western ludia passed into the hands 
of the famnus dynasty af the Kusbnns. Aliout 50 v.n. 
Kmlphiscft I chief of the Kunhnns who bad united tho 
other clans of the Yueh-chi under his rule crossed 
the Hindu Kush and conquered the districts of Kabul and 
Kandahar then rulrd apparently by the Parthian*. His 
able son and successor Kadpltiscs II further extended 
tho limits of his dominions by tho conquest of OandhUra 
and the Indus basin together with the Oangctic valley 11 s 
far cast as Benares, lu the reign of Kanishka the Hash an 
empire reached its highest extent comprising in Addition 
Kashmir and the territories of Kashgar-, Yarkand 
and Khotan in Eastern Turkestan 

With the period of the Scytho-Partliiau and especially 
Kusluiu rule commenced the great ago of expansion 
of Indian Buddhism not only in the highlands to the 
west of the Indus but also in Central and Eastern Asia. 
The Indian borderlands were now fulfilling more than 
ever the rolf that destiny had assigned them of uniting 
different streams of culture both of the East and of 




AvcresT nroux ctltvkk in akoiiaxistan 



17 



the West. A romnrknlde instance of this cultural blend 
is the strange medley of deities Indian, JSnmnstmin 
and H"llenir, figured side by side mi the coin-types 
of Kamslika and llnvislika. Another mid n more 
famous instance is the rise of the school of ail aptly 
designated as the (Jrami-Buddhist school which 
expressed the ideas of Buddhism in forms of Hellenistic 
art Nerailnlcss the Indian cultural element proved 
from the first to he one of the strongest of the competing 
forces, and it struck so deep n root in the soil that it after- 
wards grew and nourished with a wonderful vitality 
while its rivals one I>t one dropped from the scene. 
What concerns us fur our present purpose is to nut ice 
the part which foreigners played in the outward diffusion 
of Buddhism. Already More the beginning of the 
Christian era Buddhism had been carried to the valley 
of the Oxus. for a Chinese ambassador is record'd to have 
sent bom i certain Buddhist texts in 2 B. C. from the 
couutry of the Yueh-chi. According to a less authentic 
traditiou the first two Indian missionaries tu roach Chinn, 
XSsyapa Mtltaiiga and Dhamiarntna, were working in 
the Yueh-chi country (perhaps corresponding at that time 
to modern Afghanistan) before their arrival in North- 
Western Chinn in OB &. n. The most eminent king of 
the Yueh-chi or Knshau dynasty. Kanishkn, fell under 
the spell id Buddhism, and he distinguished himself as 
much by hi-, patronage of Yasuuiitra nod Asvaghosa 
as by his roustruetion of rtupa* :uid rih&rag. Tlie 
inscriptions ou relic caskets and earthen jars that have 
been recovered from the ruins of Buddhist stupas in the 




IK ASCTEN7 INDIAN COLTTRB IX AFV'.HAXKTAX 

Afghan country have preserved the names of pious downs 
of Buddhist foundations. Anion? such names are included 
those of the Greek Theodoro* (described as a meridarch 
or district officer), Honunurta (mentioned as the satrap 
of Vespnsi), an unnamed son of the satrap of Kflpisi ■w ho 
was the son of the satrap Graijafako, Rfflhnla (described 
as a monk from VanSyu) and Vagra ifaroga, son of 
Knmagali. It appears from this list that not only humble 
monks and laymen but men of high official standing 
belonging to non-Indiuu races accepted tin* teachings 
of Buddhism (I). 

This outward diffusion of Buddhism was accompanied 
by a corresponding propagation of Indian languages 
written in the current Indian scripts of the time. Wo 
know how the sands of Central .Asia have yielded to the 
labours of modern explorers both Sanskrit manuscripts 
written in the Gupta script and its local derivatives as 

well as Indian Prakrit documents written in Kharcstlii. 

* * 

Neither the climate nor the historical development of 
Afghanistan ho* been so favourable tn the preservation 
of the ancient records. But it may he observed that 
birch-lurk raanusripts were found along with other 
relics inside the stltpas of the upper Kabul valley by their 
first Western explorer. The inscriptions t>f the early 



0) On Kaiii*hk&' hiildiiuo WiltCTH, )immi f'hfrang Vol. 1, 
Pl>. 122. 1 L’ ft. 117 : RftjataitUNPOl 1 10S-I71. h«*. For th«‘ n-ftfenw* 
in Kluuv«itil in*cri|4«on*. %ro in* N n*. 3G, S7, QTi H4.B3 

in N 0. Majum<Ur‘* lu* »*f Kluniv(lil ins«rijitium(J- A. S. R 1RJR A 
iroi**cal mH'iMifil o( (lie rub nf tlio In nun* in lh« difTnnnnof niltum 
in Ontml aid Eaglem Asia (ttws in Pelliot Lc* Influtwt* 
tranieHnrjf ri? -tnV (rntm/c ct or Elite me- Orient* 1M‘J. 





AXCTES7 rjcniAX ft* LTLTiE Cf AfGH.lXISTAX 1 9 

centuries of the Christian era which have hcen More 
mentioned arc written in an Indian Prakrit which is 
fundamentally the same as the language of the Kharostki 
doc aments of the Khutau region. The con joint e\ idcnce 
of tlte well-known Kiumdhi manuscript of the Dhanua- 
pnda and of a canonical citation in a Kharcsthi 
inscription from the Kurrain valley has been held to 
prove the existence of a Buddhist canonical literature, 
perhaps cf the SarvSstivlLlin school, written in the Prakrit 
of the Kharosthi inscriptions. (1) 

One striking consequence of this cultural development 
was that the north-western frontier of India tended tn 
be pushed further beyond the Indus which was the old 
boundary. In the time of the Ackaemcnid emperors, as 
we have seen, the satrapy of ‘India” was reckoned as 
distinct from that of Gandhlira corresponding to the region 
of Peshawar and the territory' immediately to its east. 
At a Infer period Svabo (04 B. t-10 a. it.) and Arrian 
(2nd century a. n) who drew their accounts from 
Alexander’s companions and from Megaxthenes described 
the Indus as the western bound aiy of India. 13nt in the 
second century a. n. we fiud Ptolemy beginning his 
general description of “India within the Ganges” with 
the statement th»t it was “bounded on the west by the 
Paropanisadai and AracUosia anti Gedrusia along their 
eastern sides." Ptolemy accordingly prefaced his list 
of territories and cities within this region with the 

(It See llie attract <>l IV if. Slen K>MUi«rV |tai»T. Sprirhlichr uuri 
tilerwixfit Einxrthutrn in rfit Khnrrwlhf irurhvift'n,. D. M. 0 
(1WCI VI i. rr. Ixx- buJ 




20 ANCIENT INMAN CTI.TTOE IN AFGHANISTAN 

mention of Lnmhatni (nr Umln^ii) that is, the people 
of LampBka (2). It is interesting to notice that precisely 
the same boundary is indicated for India in the west by 
lliuen Tsang in the second quarter of the seventh century. 
For we are told in connection with the pilgrim's account 
of his journey, “From Ki-pin the pilgrim routined his 
journey going en.it above 600 li through a very moun- 
tainous region ; then crossing a blark range he entered 
the north of India and arrived in the lxin-po country”, (3) 
Even in the ninth century Nagarahttra could he dmrihrd 
from the point of view of n native of that country as the 
ornament of UttnrBpatha. (4) 

The Buddhist Monuments or Afghanistan 

The most majestic memorials of this expansion of 
Indian culture in the tableland to the west of the Indus 
aro undoubtedly the Buddhist monuments of Afghanistan. 
These niennmenta at the present time may Is* traced 
prineipnlly along tho track of the great highway that 
connected mullt-weetern India along the Kabul valley and 
across the Hindu Kush with Western and Central Asia, 
in the plain r,[ Jclalabad (the old NagarahAra) the ruins 
of flfijiat and monasteries are scattered in such extraordin- 
ary profusion that according to an eminent scholar and 
explorer a century of exploration has not taken away the 

(2) See 'vlihcCnDtik*. Anrir.nl India at described hy IWctny, 
WK 33,104 

131 Walter#. Yuan f ftruRp. VaL 1 p. ISO. 

li' Sou the Ohwriwoii iofetiplkMl of tin? time of iV'vjjtik 
i. A- Vol XVIL 307-312. 





ANCIENT 1X01,15 COT.TCRR IN AFnrtiNtST.VN 21 

need far buginning the task afresh. At Ifaddn, five mills 
south of Jelolabad, which is the site of the famous shrine 
of Buddha’s skull-bone, there exist numbers of ruined 
monuments containing exceptionally tine sculptures of 
the HiunUiSra school. In the Kohutnn of Kahn! which 
lay off the main truek uf early times the remains of a 
Buddhist city have been traced on the site of three vast 
amphitheatres now called the Sch Topiln, the Kaniari and 
Shevaki. In the charming valley of Knpisa have been 
definitely loaded the ruins of the famous monastery 
built by the Chinese hostages of the Emperor Kiuiishka, 
while other monasteries and mentioned bjr Hiuon 

Tseng have been tentatively identified with existing 
ruins. At Batniyan nestled beneath the ‘snowy mountains’ 
of the Hindu Kush, or more correctly enclosed between the 
Hindu Kush aril the Koh-i-Babn, there still exist in 
defiance of the ravages of time and of man the rock-eut 
grottos and shrines with thoir far-fam -d colossal images 
of Buddha which have extorted the interest, if not the 
admiration, i>f successive visitors from the time of Hiuen 
Tseng. Some idcaof the extent of these caves may be formed 
from the fart that Abul Fazl writing at the end of the 
seventeenth century estimated their number at twelve 
thousand. Some or these caves were meant for 
the residence of monks, others with a niche at their 
inner end were no doubt sanctuaries in which the 
images of Buddhas and Bodhisatvas were enshrined, 
and there were besides niches containing those images. 
Hie colossal images consist of two standing figures 
and three seated figures of the Buddha Early 




ASCI ENT INDUS CCT.TLHE IN AVOUANIsTAN 






observers usually have nuticud only the first two 
image* and one of (lie last which they quaintly 
described ils the figures of a man, a woman, ami a child. 
Both the Hgurw first mentioned are coated with 
stucco which was originally gilt .so much so that 
Hi non T*nng held the lesspr of them to be made of 
Immae. The paintings which originally decorated tin- 
uiclies of these statues as well as the facade i>r tin.* 
grottos have disappeared for the most part But some 
precious fragments from the nicies of the colo- 
ssal Buddhas that have fortunately survived the wreck 
of time have very recently been made available to us in 
coloured reproductions by the energy and enterprise of the 
French archaeological delegation iu Afghanistan. These 
[Huntings, as we now sec, represent figures of genii accom- 
pinind hy their wives with plates of offerings in their 
hands, of Buddhas and Bodhisattvos, of pious donors and 
the like. One group is of especial interest its represent- 
ing the Iranian luuar deity mounted upon a chariot drawn 
by Imrses. The Bamiyan paintings are of high impor- 
tance as forming the connecting link between the art of 
Ajanta ami the Buddhist pictorial art of Central Asia. 
Among other antiquities of Bamiyan mention may bo 
made or the curious piece of natural formation supposed 
by the Moslem inhabitants to represent a dragon (Azhdalia) 
killed by the Caliph Ali, which many scholars identified, 
wrongly as it now appears, with a famous ParinirvSpa 
image of Buddha noon by Hiuen Tsang ill the same 
locality. Beyond Bamiyan on the ancient site of Balkh 
and in the region of Afghan Turk»stan ruins of tlftpa t 




ancttvt nmi.vir ccltcre is afohantstxn 



23 



and other antiquities have recently been brought to light 
by the labour* «>f the distinguislMsl archaeologist M. 
Fbucher. (1) 

Notwithstanding tin* extent and variety of the 
Buddhist religious islifioes oF Afghanistan, they may I*' 
broadly divided under two principal heads, the *)hpa and 
the vih&ra. tho hitter term meaning the residence of the 
monks as well as the shrine of the gods. The form of 
the ntHpn ranges. »s obicwhci*, from the primitive model 
of a dome raised upon .1 circular Iwiscnient to more 
elaborate and complex typos in which the base is 



(1) For iU*4j riitticri* «»f tlv IhuldliUt anlViiiitK*'* of AfirlumMiui 
iKIuMtmliNl with j4ih^ «- •• II II liny Un. .VoJr* on wohm* lAmwfci^tt/v 
in Afobini*t'i** Mini. A. S. B. V«»L II 11911): <Vlu»r von Nir*to- 
navv«r aixl Eni*t DM/.. Afgh*m#t*ui O'.rJD. For locations of flu* older 
litres iUurtml<s| with A HIM o! Afghanistan and KPfiiliilP 

imp* <rf Ratiiiyan and Kapisl mh* Ft* ichor. A *dr* tut VHuftravrr «/r 
//t*r*» /foiap m i Eitulc* AmWuh** I. 1 1 ». 2A7-JH4). 

All cjdi*r pul ilical lull* oil IVuniyan AntiiiuiUr* an? now e*u|*T9t.'drd hy 
tho fnhlhwtiml of tli»* w»n*k of M and Mnn*v l*odard and .1 II whin. 

Antiquitr* tir iXimipSH. Pari-* IftN (with 1* iLhu*« 

tjnfion*), For rtv.»nt oxidrcatinn*. of the IlniMhi* *uti«iuiti»« at lliiikh 
aad it IliuUik ui Afjrtian Twi^m. .-**• FmihIutV ivimrts Im li. E. 
F. B.-CL Jiily-IXsocmbcr 1924. mi 4. A.. July-Scptomhor 1931 A 
abort nrcnint lifc*vl rhiofly upon a hr»pf report of M. anti Mnu* 
ClniUnl in lonn^xitxi with u nwil exhibit i«*i of Antiquities from 
AfirJun. tan and China at tlw 4 v«uin<^ appear™! in tin* 

firwN\ February 1H27. unilor tiwltitlr* /WMt*/ Rnmain* in .1 fghnni- 
*inn. Anymtf uld*r aullnritins a n iV mvhacolmn’ frf AfirlianMan 
tho irvwl important is II. II- WiUoo. Arwna Antique (l/»udou 1<S41> 
nmtiiining A mciuoir fitmi tin* jH*ti nf Chariot* Ma-vsm. ami nuiiK’roi* 
UliaaraiKm Th*» mfiinnaily a'l**)**! i*lontift*tinfi of the Azhilwha of 
Hamiyan with tin Panuirraiu imac* <if II- u Mini u injected hy P«*lliot 
(aec the additiooal not * by Paul IVtlhrt in U<xlanl and Hnkiu. op. 
cat. p. KJk Far At*d Fadcl't* account of th** Ifeitniyan • nve*. wo Ain-i- 
Akhnri iJwvtt'n trai^. Vnl 11 p. •#*«!» 




24 



AXCIEJfT UtDIAK CVLTTBE IV AFOHAXT.STAN 



multiplied info two nr more parts fur the purpose of 
producing the effect of superior elevation. In many, 
if nut must, nf the existing xt&pai of tin* Afghan 
country the drum is adorned with a belt of ornamental 
moulding consisting of a succession of arches rusting upon 
pilasters or else of a series of pilasters alone. Many nf 
the «!Rpa« , when opened by their first Western explorer, 
yielded relic caskets which were made either of gold nr of 
silver and often encrusted with gems. Besides the ttlpa* 
detached pillars of the type existing at Sanclu and Samath 
are found among the Buddhist sites of Afghanistan. 
Among the irroup of ttRpcu in the south-east of Kabul, o. g., 
there still exist two pillars, one of whirli (called the .Vr/iftr 
f 'hnJcrl or the Wheel Minar) may have originally horn 
surmounted by the figure of a wheel, like the famous lion 
pillar at Surnuth. The Buddhist riharn* are usually 
carved in the M-arps of neks at the foot of which stand 
the x/Upfit. By far the most famous of them is the group 
of cave-shrines at Batniyau mentioned above, but other 
groups of such caves exist also in the plain of Jelnlalmd 
and the Kabul region (1). 

The Irritttox of the Eputhautes (White Hess) 

AXD nv C OXSEQrENCEs. 

Tlie wonderful ex[iansiuu of Buddhism iu the Indian 
borderlands which has been described in the foregoing 

1. Fur I ho uluve, ace i>riii-i|>ully Memoir in WUmm. 

up. «L Tl** .Wi/iir (%ikn is l.untifully illuatraled by Kicdennnycr 
and Dirt* 0*1. Mt Tlir vaniMU front* of ki in VD|HP 
in tho <*aiidhiini w.-hool .iro '!<•<• HUM Ky Fnurher, L .ln (Irrrtp- 
Fbn<U1h*)n*. I pp. 




AKCISXT I.VDUX CCLTL'KE IS ATUlUXteTAX 25 

paragraphs produced results of itittili'uhiblt* advantage tn 
those tracts. At the lime of Ftt-liicii'* visit IMvfimi. 
GandhRra mid NagaraliRiH were in a flourishing oonditiun 
and boasted Of numbers of rich Buddhist convents. In the 
eyes of Buddhist pilgrims from outside, tin's** territories 
ranked as a second holy land almost comparable to 
Magadha, ns they contained the four great shrines orna- 
mented with gold and silver commemuratiuu four acta of 
sacrifice on the part of the Bodhisattva. No wonder, then, 
that in a Buddhist work formerly attributed to Asvagbosa 
OandlAra could l* 1 explained without impropriety as a 
synonym for good conduct by a little hit of fanciful 
etymology (1). But a great catastniplic overtook these 
regions in the latter pan of the tilth and the first half of 
the sixth centuries. The Ephtlialitcs «r White Huns, n 
fierce nonmdic horde from Central Asia, migrated westwards 
and southward* in search ef new homes and hurled them- 
selves against Persia and India. The Ephthulite chief 
ToramUpa who led Iris host into India (c. 49U A. I).) made 
himself the paramount sovereign of Central India He 
bequeathed his throne to his infamous son Mihimgulu 
whose memory has been branded in the Kashmir chronicle 
as the reputed slaver of three kolit of men (trikotihS) (2). A 
vivid picture of these barbarians at the height of their 
power is drawn by Song-run a Chinese nmlttasador of the 

1. Bee Ihc Fr. tr. by Huber, |>. K I*n>f. Lftikw 

nino* found tjy* ««nNvl lunii* thi* wurk to Vlii* 
nxnwfrlikn. aoi] tful of its author U> U* KnnUnliUi : See tlie Intiudw- 
l k» to hfe work. On* Katpaiifhrt'intilM Hi* KttmArMln. Fur tlio 
Brahmarifni oenmiv of (tnn<Miarn iuul Vahflu I the PinjaU. mm* 
UahAbharaU. VU1 iu f. 

2- K&AtaraOrioL 1 31U. 




26 ANCIENT INDIAN CCLTOBE IN AFGHANISTAN 

great Wu dynasty who visited their head-qiHUlers at 
Bara iy an between 518 and 522 a. i>. According t<> his 
account more Ilian forty cuuntrios offered homage t<i the 
Kplithalitcs whose capital was adorned with many temples 
and pagodas ornamented with gold. They had, however, 
no faith in Buddha and used to kill living beings. The 
same lack of faith prevailod in Shcn-mi (Kafiristan) (31). 
The destructive fury of the White lluns was felt 
specially in the unhappy land of Qandh&ra. In the latter 
part of the fifth century Gandhlra was still a noted centre 
of learning, for it produced two of the greatest achdars of 
Mahgyftna BnddhiRm, namely, Asnhga and his brother 
Vasubandhu. At UdySna even ut the time of Song-run's 
visit the law of the Buddha was honoured as before, and 
there was a great number of temples and f/ft/irw ; the 
reigning king constantly strove after perfection according 
to the Buddhist ideas and gave himself up to constant 
abstinence. But Mihiragula devastated the Buddhist 
shrines of GandhSra with a ruthlessm-sa which gave the 
death-blow to its far-famed school ol art. 

The Ri le or the Western Trars and ns Coweqiencw. 

In the middle of the Otk century another revolution 
took place in the shifting politics of Central Asia. The 
Turks called Tou-kiu by the Chinese were originally 
bondsmen of a neighbouring tribe called the Juiii-Ji«ui in 
a distant corner of Mongolia. But in the beginning of the 
Gth century they threw off the yoke of their hated masters 
and emerged into political importance. In course of time 

X ifcr Cbuvanaea. Voyage Je Song-gutt dam r I'dyina «i U 
OandhUra. U. E. K. E.-0_ 1WO. 



AM.' I ENT IXIIIAN ClT.TVltR IN AKI.IU.V1STAN 



27 



they split up into two sections namely tin* Northern and 
the Western Turks. Between and .*07 a. u. t h> • 

Western Turks joinul hands w itli the famous Sa*snnide 
king of Persia Khusru Anushirvan to destroy the empire of 
the White Huns. For a short time the Persian* held 
Balkh and tin- adjoiuing territories, hut by tlie end of the 
0th century the Western Turks gained the mastery and 
obtained pns.scsj.iim of all tlm dominions of the lluus to the 
south of the Hindu Kush. At the lime of Hiuen-TsaugV 
visit in 1530 a. u. the country of Tu-ho-lu (Ti'khflrnl, extend- 
iug amirding to the pilgrim from the Karakorum to 
Par- i a and from the enlobrated defile of the Iron fiati* 
to the Hindu Kush, whs divided into twenty-seven states 
all subject to the Turks. A Turkish king reigned , vt>1 ' •" 
the country mum I tlm modern lltipimi (w f»pian) to the 
south of the Hindu Kush (11 

The rule of tin- Western Turks which helped to bring 
the four great ci\ ilisntiniis of the time, tin- Byzantine, tin* 
Persian, tlm Indian and tin- Chinese, into mutual contact 
was attended with the happiest result* for the diffusion of 
cultures. It was through tlieir dominions that Zoroastri- 
ftnism as well ns Nestnriau Christianity imssed into China 
from the West. Buddhism specially found in the Turkish 
war-lords a warm champion of its cause. In 152*5 iSlii-hu- 
kaimn, the supreme chief of the Turks gave a warm 
welcome to the Indian Buddhist monk PrakhBkaraniitm 
and his companions on tlieir way to China. Four years 
afterwards he extended the Mime welcome to tl*e illustrious 
Hiuen-Tsang to whom In- gave subsequently tile safe 

1. Walter*. Yuan flbrnny. Vol d |». JW. 




28 ASUIXT IKU1AN CVLTCBE IK AfttUiXtsTAX 

condnot fi»r his journey to India (I). Wu-kung who visited 
Kashmir and 4>atidhSm lictvwn 759 and 764 t>. was 

shown two temples in Kashmir aud two other tPiiiphw in 
UandlAr* which were said to have been built by a 
Turkish king, his queen and his son (2). 

It is possible to glean a general account of the state of 
Indian culture in the highlands to the west of the Indus at 
this period horn the vivid accoant of Iliucn-Tsung supplc- 
mented by notices of other Chinese writers in the same and 
following centuries. Buddhism, it appears, was known 
in nil thesp regions and in some parts it flourished excee- 
dingly In the Kunduz country the majority of the people 
were Buddhists. The country of Balkh contained above 
one hundred monasteries with more than 3000 rnuuks. 
Its glory was the great Nava-vihira or Nava-satiigh&rHnui 
reputed to possess tlie washing basin, a tooth and a broom 
of Buddha and enjoying a unique reputation as the 
grentest centre of Buddhist learning to the north of the 
Hindu K unIl It coutained liesides two which pious 

credulity assigned to the time of KSsyapa Buddha. An 
interesting side-light is thrown upon the Indian connec- 
tions of Balkh by the pilgrim’s statement that its capital 
was known ns little Itnjagriha no douU after the famous 
ancient capita! of Magadhu bearing that name. In the 
(iaz country to the south of Balkh there were more than 
ten monasteries with three hundred brethren of the 
Sarvflstirfldin school. The district of Bamiyan contained 



I. Sw CkaVBHDe&, DocnmtHl* at ir hr Tttrrs oocidettlnux, MW 
13H. 300-301. 

- See CliBVitoiK^-Levi. Ler Hitter aim tf (/-kony, . 1 . A. 




AHCI3NT INDIAN CTLTCRE IN ATOILVNRT.VN 



20 



some tans of Buddhist monasteries with several thousands 
of bretbem of the LokidtaravUdin school. Tin- two rock-cut 
images of the Budilin together with tin equally 
colossal Parinirvftija Buddha were already in existence 
and exhited the interest of tin* Chinese pilgrim. 'Hie king 
of Bamijran, we are further fold, held a quinquennial 
assembly (was it inspired hr the memorahle example 4 
the contemporary Hindu emperor Harjavnrdliana ?) at 
which he was wont f«i give away all his possessions to 
the monks, his officials afterwards redeeming the valuables 
from them. KnpisS, renowned fur its horses and its 
saffron, ljoasted of above one hundred monasteries tenanted 
by six thuusand bretheru, i hit-fir MaliftySnists : the king, 
who exereined authority over LimpSka, NagarahSra and 
OandhJra as well was reputed to be a h’sntriva and was .1 
zealous Buddhist. Lamjfcika had above ton monasteries 
with monks chiefly MuhslvIliiisK MuhlUfin.-t Buddhism 
also flourished in the country of .fUguija noted for its 
saffron and asafortida, where the king was a true believer 
in Buddha. The Turkish king of the country round Hu- 
pian was a zealous follower of Buddhism (1). 

In the abore. it will lie noticed, MahlySna Buddhism 
is dntrild as flourishing in certaiu |»rts of the country 



1. See Wallets. Yuoh^I ttrang VoL I. |i|>. log- Kill. |sl-ias ; VoL 
II, iv- iBi-ifih. Limjak* i- w-ll known to Sanskrit literature (Scv» 
a. g. Mahifh. VII 122. MAikarid.yaeneii.ia LYII |o, tlcMariinndre'a 
AMlidhtaBdiintainanl IV In th.‘ uitaliene id VAlsas in the 
YnluLnayiirl. u Y«kj» .iilbsl K*!aha|>riya in suil lo l«* the luHaiy 
divinity of LunpIkA. JAtrii'Li i*.iiii* in Mi'll. 111. 21. g4-'J4! in a I ---1 
of ptopk* •<> rin* wart of thf In. Ins. Knr Chinn** notion uf i«s 
product). nee HetthoM Loif-T. Siutr httniro, Index -. v. Jitaida. 




30 



AN-fTOJT mux CULTURE IN' AFGHAXWTAN 



immediately bordering on the North-Western frontier 
The prevalence of the MahSyltna cults in these regions is 
attested by other documents of a somewhat later period. 
The Mitrasampnta-fiUtra (a Sanskrit work translated 
into Chinese by Narendrayusax between . r »H9 and tifH a. d.) 
contains a list of places sanctified by the presence of 
Bodhisattvas. Among these are included Gaudh&ra w here 
dwells Tn-li-sha-roe-jn-lo (Dnrsanajnnmnla) muni, and 
Ki-pin (Kashmir or Kapistt) where dwells Kong-(kong)- 
mo-ni-kiu (Kuinkittna) muni. The Hevajra-Tantra which 
belongs to a somewhat Inter date mentions a list of 
Bodhisattva /J?^»fl*«nd vpnpUJiax among which is included 
LanipJtka (1). In keeping with this point may be mentioned 
tlic fact that a Srama^a of Lan-po (Lampakaj is recorded 
as translating a Sanskrit work on magical incantation* 
(dhSlraqis) into Chinese (2). 

The picture of the state of Buddhism that is presented 
to us in the foregoing paragraphs implies a close contact 
between the countries beyond the Indus aud tlie great 
centres of Buddhism in Eastern India Direct testimony 
to this effect is furnished by the biographical accounts of 
about .VI missionaries from the pen of the celebrated 
I-tsing. We thus learn how a native of the 
Kbuig country (Samarkand) entered India in the 7th 
century in the train of a Chinese ambassador aud per- 
formed a pilgrimage to Mahlbodhi. The people of 
Tikharistan built at an nnknown place in eastern India 

(11 Sm* the <ti»rtntinra in she Kn«li«li ir. of Sylvain IV-vi’* article 
on Kiinrnnlhn ami ATwnrwtW rn I A. 1!WG pp. 4. 2H-3I 

(21 See Walter*. Yunu-ritntuff, Vol. I p. 182. 




AUCTEWT INDUS Ctn-TTHR IV AFGHANISTAN 



31 



H temple for the accommodation of pilgrims from their 
own country. In I-tsing’s time it was distinguished for 
its wealth and the excellent regulation of its affairs. A 
temple of the country of KapisI also existed at MahRhodhi 
whets* pilgrims from the North were accommodated on 
their visit to the holy place (1). 

The invaluable evidence of Riuen Twang is also im- 
portant as showing how non-Buddhistic Indian faiths 
found their way at this period into the highlands of 
Afghanistan. An early evidence of the prevalence of the 
Suva cult in (landliRra is provided by a KharogthI in- 
scription (2) of tlw* reign of Miiliflritja Gusapa (Kudphisca 
II) recording a gift of money at a temple of Siva ron- 
xtructed by Moika, son of Urumuja. The hold of Saivaism 
over the foreign settlers is likewise proved by certain 
coin- typos of Kmlphises II and Yftsudevn figuring the 
god Siva ou the reverse. Mihiragula himself soems to 
have combined with his fanatical steal against Buddhism 
a pious regard for Saivaism which displayed itself in the 
construction of Sivitc edifices at £>rinagani. the capital of 
Kashmir (3). No wouder, then, that Hiuen Twang found 
at Kapi& some tens of “deva temples" and “above 
one thousand professed sectarians. Dignm bums 



ll) Sv IjfJt Rfligictu r minin’* qt*i ollerttti rhrrrhrr la foi dans 
lr* )m#* tl'n+idmU. jxir Tnwi Chavnnni'*. l-tciri* van lorn 

iji U!U, loTfurmed hktimvcte from 671 to littfi and dird in 713 a. k 
It nift.v 1h* ulawyvrxl in tlu» connoction tiuit 1 Iui«m>Thii»i: iiniitimis 

«* ‘safnia tore'’ built ut Mfthnkiodhi by entail tnenimni:* nf tl*> 
JBgi» eoaatry (Water*. Van ‘Jitra**/, \\A, II p. 1261 

(U) No. 47 in MfljnmdarV list, op dt. 



(3) 8«j R^amriiAiriql IJOft One type of edna of Miltirwuli hi* 
tli- IUtm» nf a bull with a iiim*|K*idiiiir Iwed «n tho rrvor»* 
t VI n<mt Smith'* (hlalogitr. p. 2281 



32 



AJCCIECT INDIA* CC1TCRR IN AFGHANISTAN 



PftnpatiM aud “those who wear wreaths of skulls 
ms head -ornaments". Numbers of “dcva-temples'' also 
existed iu his time at Lampaka, Nagantiiara. Jigu<)a 
and even in the distant Andarflb (l) It may be mentioned 
in this connection that the l*Hxupata* otherwise called 
Mflliosvaras were a well-known Sivitc sect of ancient 
times one of whom main strongholds in Hiueu Tsangs 
time was Benares. The wearers of skulls no doubt have 
to be identified with a more reprehensible sect of the same 
persuasion known to Indian literature under the names of 
KRpRliku and KRlaiuuldiu (2) 

The (Kslacoht of Islam and its CossBocrNOfs — 

the First Prase. 

About the middle of tho seventh century while Iliucn 
Tsang was still sojoumaying among the lands and people 
of India came the first shock of contact tatween the arms 
of Islam and the highlands immediately to the west of the 
Indus. Tin' swift and dramatic, advance of tlie Saracen 
power in flu* half century following the flight uf the 
Prophrt to ilisiiua is one of the enigmas of history. In an 
incredibly start time Syria. Egypt, Mesopotamia ami 
utavc all Persia succumbed to the irresistible march of 
the invaders. At this critical time the Western Turks 
who had dominated the country to the south of the Oxiis 
were overthrown by an invasion of the Chinese. But 
tho new conquerors were deprived not long afterwards 
of their control over the western lands by a crushing 

lit 8re Walter*. I'win (km inn. Vol 1 pft. 123. 181 1*8, 
vn». ii me 2». 2m. 

r>) Sec Sir R- 1«. IHuui>Lu-l.sir. I 'ntfunrimi. m* 127-138- 




man Indian culture in Afghanistan 33 

defeat that they suffered at the hands of tin* Tihrtans. The 
Arabs were not slow to take advantage of the prevailing 
confusion. Already in the time of the Caliph Othmnn 
(044-656 a. a) an Arab force had invaded the territory of 
Afghanistan from the south and had occupied Ghazni, 
Kabul and other places. Not long aftenvards (663-664 
a. d.) another Arab army invaded Balkh from the north 
and destroyed the famous NavarihXra monastery, while a 
fresh expedition under Qutaiha bin Muslim resulted in 
the conversion of Balkh to the faith of Islam. At tbp rime 
of its destruction the Navavihltra monaster? contained 
according to the accounts of later Arab writrra three 
hundred colls grouped round a central pagoda, while its 
hereditary priest cnlleil the BnrMck was in poMesian of an 
estate amounting to scvpii hundred mid fort? square miles. 
After the catastrophic overthrow of Buddhism the Barmek 
aewptrd the religion of his eonquorors and his sons after- 
wards rose to the highest offiew under the famous Harnn- 
ur-Rashid. Tlic eighth century opened with still greater 
disasters for the cause of Indian cultmv in its outposts to 
the west of the Indus. While an Arab general Qutaiha 
carried the victorious arms of Islam into Transoxiana. the 
famous general Muhammad bin Qasim led his army 
across Balorhistan and conquered the lower Indus valley 
as far north as Multan. The doom of the Indian or 
Indianised peoples caught as they wen* betwoen tho two 
great blocks of Moslem t e rr itor y was from that time prac- 
tically sealed. In the time of the Caliph al-Mansiir 
(744-775 aja), or possibly that of his successor, the princes 
of Bamiyau bearing the little of Sker accepted the tcacliiiig 




34 



ANCIENT INDIAN CUT-TUBE IN AFUHANKTAN 



of Islam. Finally an Arab invasion in tho time of Ma’mun 
the last of the great Caliphs of the house of Abbas 
(813-833 a. a) resulted Lu the conversion of Kabul. 

After such deep wounds inflicted by the triumphant 
sword of Islam it would seem that the influences of Indian 
culture were all but obliterated in the tracts beyond the 
Indus. Yet, strangely enough, such was not the case. 
Wn-kung who arrived at Ki-pin (KapisS) in the train of a 
Chinese embassy and reached (randhfir* in 753 a. ii men- 
tions two Buddhist monasteries at Udy&na called Sukha- 
vati and PadmlvatL He also recorded that there was not 
tho slightest difference between what he said and what was 
said by Hiueu Tsang (1). The Chinese Buddhist literature 
has preserved tho name of a Sramaga of KuhhR (Kabul) 
called Projhfl who translated certain Buddhist texts into 
Chinese between 7R."> and RIO A. U. (2). Mention may be 
made, lastly, of a Pftla inscription of the ninth century 
which commemorates the achievements of Viradeva a 
distinguished Buddhist mouk belongiug to a Brahinaga 
family of NagarahttrA who made a pilgrimage to MahR- 
bodhi and was afterwards appointed head of the NSlandR 
monastery by Devap#la the reigning king of Bengal (3) 

Renewed Acwubsmos of Islam and Final Cou-ai'se 
of Indian cultcbe. is ArxniAXisTAN 

By the middle of the ninth ceutury tho groat ompirc of 
the Abbaside Caliphs of Bagdad had tottered to its fall. 

(1) See Cliaranrw's-ljH-i. hiatntirt iT (ht-Kong. J. A- 1895. 

See Buniyo Nflnjw'n (’■atolnuuc, N<i. 188. 

131 See the Qhroiikwiui ittstviplion of the tunc of Devspila. t. A. 
Vof. XVU |>p. 307-312. 





AKCIK5T IXIMAK ITLTCRE IS ATORANTTAV 35 

Out of its ruin* arose now dynasties mainly of Turkish 
and Persian stocks to some of which destiny assigned the 
task of sweeping away the last remnants of Indian rule in 
the highlands of Afghanistan. Yakub the son of Lais 
whtf founded the Soffaride dynasty of Persia completed the 
annexation of Balkh, Bainiyan and Kabul to the dominion 
of Islam (870-871 a. i».). Kabul at this time was ruled h.v 
a king called Kabul Shall by the invaders, who is described 
as a Turk by race and a Buddhist by religion and who 
doubtless belonged to the so-called dynasty' of Turkish 
SliRhiyas. It was about this time that Lalliya the minister 
of the last Turkish ShBhiyn deposed his master and 
founded the illustrious line of kings known to history as 
the Hindu SliHhiras of Ohiud. Few of the Indian mediieval 
dynasties have deserved se well of the student of history, 
and none certainly has boeu able to draw the inspect of 
friend and foe alike in as much measure as this unfortunate 
dynasty. Of its illustrious founder wo are told that he 
maintained his position between the Darada-s and the 
Turoskas as between the lion and the boar, that his capital 
was a refuge of other kings and that his glory far out- 
shone that of other northern rulers. His kingdom was 
fairly extensive as it comprised GandhXra and UdySna 
with a considerable part of the Panjab (l). In the reign of 
one of his unknown successors a Chinese Buddhist pilgrim 
called Ki-ye with a company of three hundred monks 
reached Gandhflra by way of the Gilgit valley from Kan- 
su in north-west China ; he is recorded to have visited, in 
the tract to the west of Kashmir aud on the way to 

i.l) Soe K&ataniftrinl V. 152-too with Stein's nrte 




:|fi ANCIENT MDUK CIJI.TL'BE IK AFGHANISTAN 

( iandliRra, i In* mountain win -re the Bodhisuttva threw 
luniM-lf to food n hungry tigressf'J). T1 m> last king* of this 
dynasty engaged in n valiant contest with the Turkish 
.Sultans of Ghazni for preserving their own independence. 
Yet of one of them Jlnandpal, son of .1 hi pill, anecdotes *are 
preserved showing his patronage of grammatical learning 
and his chivalry towards his great antagonist, Sultan 
Mahmud (3). The issue of the wars between the Hindu 
ShBlliyaK mid the Ohazuavidc Sultans was disastrous 
for the cause of the Indians. In Muccetwiou Imnipilka. 
Nagaraiiira and at last UdabhUuijapura, the capital, 
won* annexed by the invaders. The last stand 
was made by lYilochanpil, the son of ilnandpftl 
against Mahmud in the plain of the Tuualii river to the 
sooth of Kashmir. Hut once more victory declared itself 
in favour of the Moslems. With this last battle the 
Hindu Shlhiytut disappeared from the pages of history. 
So utter was their overthrow that it produced a profound 
impress iuu upon on-lookers even in that period of shaking 
thrones and tottering dynasties. We catch an echo of 
the universal wail of grief tliat rose at this catastrophe 
in the brief but |«thetic lament ol Kalhapa in the RBja* 



r_'i Sw i Ik avuuni i4 KiL Ctavuuea in D. K- F. H-O. ltKH. TIk 
«nmM date v4 Ki-ycV ih'iwiiuie for I mini hvw China i* JMU) a. tr. 

il<M. 

13) Sir Atbcnni'-. India. HtehnuV tr.. VuL I. I*. 136 : Vol II. pe. 
13-14 Til. hill nwon of Anandiil's chivalry will appear Imin 
11 k won-attested fw-t Uml Mahmud. after dofmtiwr his Mifr •Uiidl 
and Utkina him captive, sold him as a slave fo» SO dinars. (See J. R. A. 
S llfei, p|x 493-1% ior corroborative t-rubm* of this had l 




Axcnwr ironic cttt.tttrr ts aWbaMrtak 37 

taraijgigi (1), “Of the ShRhiya kings one now asks whether 
with its kings. its ministers and its coart, it erer cxirtrd". 
And the great nebular Alberuni, himself u profrye of Mah- 
mud, seized the occasion to pay his tribute of geriei-ous 
honfHEP to the memory of the illustrious House. “Tire Hindu 
ShHhiva dynasty", he wrote (*2) u is now extinrt and of the 
whole house there in no longer the slightest remnant in ex- 
istence. We must sav that in all their grandeur they never 
slackened in the ardent desire for doing that which is good 
and right. and that they were men of noble sentiments 
ami noble hearing." What harm- the raids of Mahmud 
made in the lands which he plundered is described by 
Alberuni in imother part of Iris work. 'Mahmud." we 
arc told (:t), "utterly mined tin* prosperity of tin* country 
and performed those wonderful exploits by which tin* 
Hindus liei-nue like atoms of Just, scattered in ail 
directions and like a tale of old in the mouth of tire 
people . . . Til is is the reason why Hindu sciences have 
retired far away from those parts of the country conquered 
by us and have fled to places which our hands cannot 
yet reach, to Kashmir, Beuiuvs and other places.'* 

With the collapse of the last of the Hindu Shilhiyas at 
the hands of Saltan Mahmud, the curtain dropped upon 
Indian cultural domination in Afghanistan. Yet the long 
stretch of centuries through which Hindu rultuml influ- 
ences ruled the Afghan country could not but leave deep 
traces of their existence such as the siilisis|uent nine 

(1) YDA 

Cil Op. dl. ml U a IX 

Ct Il.itl. VoL I p. 22. 




38 ascisw dour ctlttbe in atoiianiwan 

centuries of Moslem rule have failed altogether to efface 
Of this the most striking example is the group of indige- 
nous ludiun liuiguogv* still ill vogue iu the kingdom. 
The Plsh&i, the must iui|iortaut of such languages, is at 
present confined to the narrow tract of country north of 
the Kabul river. But there is reason to believe that 
it formerly extended over tho wholo of the upper and 
middle Kabul valley. The Kaffir languages prevailing in 
north-eastern Afghanistan have more affinities with the 
Indian tlia.ii with the Iranian languages, and they have 
been latterly so much influenced by contact with the 
north-western Indian frontier tribes tlwt they may now be 
regarded as essentially Indian.* 



• See M'mpwtirme. Report on n Lingtualir Minmon la , [ftyha- 
xnfriit. 1926. * v. Predial ami I be Kaffir teiiwv 




Greater India 5ociety 



Purodhah : RABINDRANATH TAGORE 

resident: JADUNATH 8ARKAR, > 4 , cle, 

Vice Chancellor, Calcutta Uniter tity. 
Sec'Hary: Du KALTDAS RAO, ma.d litt (Paris). 

PUBLICATIONS. 

1. i.ntHloda Colonies ia the Far Hast— VoLI. CHAMPA 

Dr. Raroesh Chandra Majarndar, a.i , Ph.I). Price 
tu*. 15, (for Members R*. PA 

2. Hi rda Law and Customs. Br Dr. J. Jolly, Professor of 

Sanskrit, University of Weirabarg. Price Rs. 10-8, 

3. Greater India. By Dr. Kalida* Nag. Ke. 1. 

*»dia and China- By Dr. l’rabodh Cbaodra Bagch’. 
Re. 1. 

India and Jura. By Dr. Bijan Raj Cbatterjee. Re. 1. 

6. India and Central Asia. By Dr. Niranjan Prosnd 

Cbakrararty. Re. 1. 

7. Ancient Indian Callure In Afghanistan. By Dr. Dpcndra 

Nath Ghosal, «.a, PhD. Re. 1. 

8. ( in Bengali ) 

Do Do (in Hindi ) 

Far Membership and Information Apply to the Ilony. Secy. 

Greater India Society, 

91, Upper Circular Road, 

cHLrurm. 




Printed by SajinikanU Has 
At the PRABASI PHE38 
91, Upper Circular Rood. Calcutta. 




CALCUTTA 

192tt.